Sophisticated Suspense and more . . .

Scotch Whisky

Robert delighted in Scotch whisky and used it to soothe his stress after the disaster with Meri in the Folly the night of her Georgian Ball, as well as in his upstairs flat whenever he needed to understand what made her tick.


Bottles of single malt scotches were kept by Clive in the Chartsfield Library as a touch of authenticity.  In the early days of working together Robert often invited Meri to join him there for a scotch and discuss issues that arose. Sometimes they battled each other about how best to solve a problem. Other times they celebrated successes.  And every time they did it with a different Scotch whisky.


Here, then is an overview of Scotch whisky.


Scotch whiskey is malt or grain whisky made in Scotland as specified by Scottish law.  There are a variety of tastes, some flavored by peat and smoke, some light and fruity, others flavored by the sea.


Scotch whisky must be aged at least three years in oak barrels and there are five categories: single malt, single grain, blended malt, blended grain, and blended Scotch whisky. The five Scotch whisky definitions are organized in such a way to make the categories mutually exclusive.  For example,

Blended malt Scotch whisky means a blend of two or more single malt Scotch whiskies from different distilleries.  Blended grain Scotch whisky means a blend of two or more single grain Scotch whiskies from different distilleries.  Blended Scotch whisky means a blend of one or more single malt Scotch whiskies with one or more single grain Scotch whiskies.


According to the Scotch Whisky Association, Scotch whisky evolved from a Scottish drink called uisge beatha, which means "water of life." The earliest record of distillation in Scotland occurred somewhere around 1494.


Scotland was traditionally divided into four regions: The Highlands, The Lowlands, The Isle of Islay, and Campbeltown. Due to the large number of distilleries found there, the Speyside region is now also recognized by the Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) as a distinct region.


Examples of Highland whisky distilleries include Glenmorangie, Oban, Dalmore, and Tallisker (from a nearby island).


Examples of Lowland whisky distilleries in the southernmost region of Scotland include Glenkinchie, Girvan, and Bladnoch.  Whiskies from this region tend to be soft and light in character, with malty, grassy notes and subtle, delicate aromas.


Speyside, named from the River Spey, has the largest number of distilleries in Scotland and some of them include well known Scotch whiskeys such as Glenfarclas, Dalwhinnie, Glenfiddich, Macallan, and the Glinlivit.  Speyside is known for producing sweet whiskies, with mellow notes and fruity flavors.


Campbeltown originally had about 30 distilleries but has only three distilleries left. Glen Scotia is the name of one of them.


Islay distilleries include Bowmore, Lagavulin, and Laphroaig.  Islay whiskies are the strongest flavored and renowned for their dryness and strong taste of peat and smoke.